Author(s): Lewis DM, Levi AJ, Brooksby P, Jones JV
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Abstract Contractile properties and fibre type composition of slow-twitch soleus muscles from spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) were compared with those from a control normotensive strain (Wistar-Kyoto, WKY). Male rats aged around 100 days were used, and muscle tension was recorded isometrically in vitro. Tetanic tension was reduced by about 15\% in SHR; this decrease was highly significant when tension was expressed relative to muscle cross-sectional area. Twitch contraction and relaxation were 12-15\% faster in SHR. There were no differences in the rate of rise of tension of either tetani or twitches, but the relaxation of tetanic tension was 17\% faster in SHR. Twitch:tetanus ratios were 20\% smaller in SHR. Histochemistry showed that SHR muscles had a threefold higher proportion of fast type II fibres compared to WKY. There were no significant changes in the contractile properties of the fast-twitch extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscles of SHR compared with WKY. Whilst the higher proportion of type II fibres could account for some of the contractile changes in SHR soleus muscles, the lack of any difference in the rate of rise of twitch and tetanic tension is not consistent. The faster rate of relaxation of both twitch and tetanus in SHR suggests that a higher rate of removal of calcium, either from the myofilaments or from the cytoplasm, may be an important factor in causing the changes in SHR soleus. The faster relaxation may be compared with a similar change reported in SHR cardiac myocytes.
This article was published in Exp Physiol
and referenced in Journal of Bioanalysis & Biomedicine